The Punk Rock Movie (1978)

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Musician and filmmaker Don Letts made this Super 8 documentary of the London punk rock scene in 1977. Shot mostly at the Roxy, a short-lived punk club that hosted every important rock band in the neighborhood, The Punk Rock Movie captures an exciting moment in the development of some artists that are still imitated and adulated today. While the Sex Pistols and the Clash are likely to be the most familiar names in attendance, The Punk Rock Movie spends plenty of time on some legendary acts that never licked the same brass ring. Fans of the under-documented Johnny Thunders will want to see the footage of the Heartbreakers live on tour in England. Siouxsie & the Banshees, X-Ray Spex, and Eater are other notable rockers who are seen in rare early performances. Backstage revelry and tour bus boredom is preserved as well, with the dark side represented by unflinching scenes of drugs and self-abuse. Most of the film is live, loud, breakneck rock, featuring some energetic footage of the Sex Pistols at the height of their hype and the Clash set for stun and gathering its army. ~ Fred Beldin, Rovi

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